“American Made” is not a term to be taken lightly, nor is it a phrase that exists to bait patriotic citizens to buy a specific product. No. If something is said to be made in the U.S.A., it must actually meet rather strict standards. According to the Federal Trade Commission, a product must be “all, or virtually all made in the U.S.” in order to be labeled as such. This is easy for, say, food or drink, but when it comes to the world of watches, this requisite becomes more difficult to meet. It’s why enthusiasts are equal parts enthralled and curious about J.N. Shapiro’s claim to have just released the first American-made mechanical watch since 1969, right before the quartz crisis.
The timepiece is called Resurgence and is a beautiful, luxurious 38mm dress watch made in-house in California and can be completely customized (including the case size). With case materials that include steel, 18k gold (white or rose), tantalum, and dark zirconium, it features a multi-layered dial with the brand’s signature Infinity weave pattern that can be customized in different colors and a moiré subdial that tracks the seconds. The edge of the case features a barleycorn pattern that was popular in the pocketwatch heyday.
However, the real star is arguably the movement itself, which was in development since 2019. You can actually choose between three different bridge configurations, all free-sprung calibers with a hacking seconds function for setting precise time, an 18,000 BPH frequency (similar to the Grand Seiko in-house 3180), and 14k rose gold wheels. Also popular with early pocket watches is the damaskeening finish used here, although other options are available as well. In terms of non-American parts, only the hairsprings, mainsprings, crystals, gaskets, straps, and jewels — just 1.78% of the timepiece’s components — come from another country.
Prices for the Resurgence watches start at $70,000. Head over to J.N. Shapiro’s website to learn how you can customize your own.